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WEST COVINA, CA, January 04, 2018 /24-7PressRelease/ -- Sleep apnea is a common sleep disorder that affects about 22 million Americans, including many with epilepsy. During sleep apnea episodes, breathing is obstructed, and the oxygen levels in the blood drop. This starves the brain and causes the person to awaken briefly to clear the obstruction. The poor quality of sleep that results from sleep apnea combined with the stress on the cardiovascular system can lead to multiple serious health problems. Covina dentist, Dr. Elsherif, comments on a study demonstrating a link between sleep apnea treatment and epilepsy.
Epilepsy is a neurological disorder that is characterized by seizures. About one out of 26 people will be diagnosed with epilepsy during their lifetime, and about 150,000 new cases are diagnosed annually. Poor quality sleep can trigger seizures and is known to increase both the frequency and severity of seizures. The study, which included more than 120 patients with both sleep apnea and epilepsy and nearly 200 patients altogether, used treatment to improve the symptoms of sleep apnea. During the nearly year-long study period, the patients being treated for sleep apnea experienced a 50 percent decrease in seizures compared to periods when they were not being treated.
Because many people both with and without epilepsy are unaware that they have sleep apnea, they are not being treated. Sleep apnea symptoms include:
- Loud snoring
- Feeling unrefreshed after a full night of sleep
- Waking with a dry mouth, a sore throat or a headache
- Excessive daytime sleepiness
- Mouth breathing at night
- Irritability, depression or sudden mood changes
- Weight gain
For those who have any symptoms of sleep apnea, testing can help identify it and get patients the treatment they need.
Dr. Elsherif offers oral appliance therapy, or OAT, which can significantly improve the symptoms of sleep apnea in people with mild-to-moderate obstructive sleep apnea. Oral appliances are customized to fit and designed to keep the airway open. Because they are easy to use and comfortable to wear, patient compliance is high.
Other treatments are also available, including dental fillings, teeth whitening, full and partial dentures, dental implants, pediatric dental care, and orthodontics.
About Dr. Elsherif
Dr. Ismail Elsherif graduated from Cairo University Faculty of Oral and Dental Medicine in 1979. He has a Master's Degree in Endodontics and a Doctorate Degree in Restorative Dentistry. Today, he is a member of the San Gabriel Dental Society, a member of the American Dental Association and an assistant professor at Loma Linda University.
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